Airport links in Montreal, Halifax, Edmonton et Ottawa

Transport Action members mourn the
passing of Keith Knox,
Past President of Transport 2000 Saskatchewan.
(Leader-Post photo) 
Reports on transit funding in Toronto and Montreal. New regulations on bus service in Manitoba. M. Dubé propose une uniformisation de la taxe sur les immatriculations à un niveau de 75 $ par an et plus in this week's Transport Action Hotline.

Hearings explore funding for Montreal-area transit, Transport 2000 

"The Montreal Metropolitan Community, the regional planning body that covers 82 municipalities and 3.7 million residents, calculates $22.9 billion in major transit projects are in the works, but funding is not in place for many of them," the Montreal Gazette reported on May 8. 

"Transport 2000 (is) a transit users’ lobby group. It favours a system similar to that of France, where companies pay a levy to fund transit based on the size of their payrolls. The Conseil régional de l’environnement de Montréal, a coalition of environmental groups. It wants 30 per cent of Quebec’s transport-infrastructure fund to go to transit, up from 18 per cent. At the moment, 82 per cent goes to roadways," Andy Riga wrote for the Montreal Gazette

Transport Action, Le train léger et l'Aéroport d'Ottawa 

«Le patron de l'aéroport (Paul Benoît) a tenu à répliquer aux critiques du groupe Transport Action qui a accusé l'administration aéroportuaire d'avoir misé sur un agrandissement de son stationnement au lieu de créer un accès direct au train léger d'Ottawa. Nous avons toujours dit que nous sommes prêts à recevoir le train léger lorsque la ville sera prête à le prolonger jusqu'à l'aérogare. D'ailleurs, si le train ne vient pas d'ici deux ou trois ans, nous devrons investir encore 4 ou 5 millions $ pour agrandir encore le stationnement » Charles Thériault a écrit pour Le Droit le 09 mai.

New airport express services in Edmonton and Halifax 

"Edmonton just started a new express bus service between their airport and the south end of the LRT line at Century Park Station. The airport is a long way south of the city," Transport Action's Colin Leech reported on May 8. 

"There are no transfer privileges to the rest of the buses and LRT in Edmonton. Buses run every 30 minutes during peak periods and hourly
otherwise.The trip takes 24 minutes on the 747 and then another 20 minutes or so on the LRT to downtown. 

"Halifax's Metro Transit will begin express service ("MetroX 320") to Stanfield International Airport on May 31. Fare is $3.25 for the 31 km route, which is a premium fare but with transfers and top-ups available to/from regular routes. The route number is a bit more subtle. apparently Air Canada uses Airbus 320s at YHZ," Transport Action's Colin Leech reported. 

Transport Action BC, Ecopath, New West Environmental Partners

"Our most recent meeting was on March 6, 2012 in New Westminster. A lively discussion was held with guests from New West Environmental Partners, Ecopath Planning and the Council of Canadians. The next meeting is planned for early May 2012 in Vancouver. The meetings are usually held at the Firehall Library at 10th Avenue near Granville between 6:00PM and 7:45PM. Please contact us if you are interested in attending. Transport Action BC typically meets monthly. Guests are welcome at meetings," Transport Action BC reports.

Manitoba, New intercity transportation regulatory system 

Transport Action Canada Prairie reports: "Manitoba Transportation Minister Steve Ashton announced (March 14) that a new intercity transportation regulatory system has been decided upon. It will allow carriers, such as Greyhound, to be able to operate in Manitoba, without subsidies and essentially with no operational regulation. This has come about as the result of Greyhound's threat in 2009 to end services in Manitoba as it was losing money throughout. The province subsidized Greyhound until such time as a new agreement could be arrived at.

"The previous regulations (unchanged for the better part of fifty years) required Greyhound to subsidize money-losing routes with profits from others (on which, be it noted, Greyhound held a monopoly). As well, it was difficult for the carrier to adjust its routes. All such rules have now been lifted: from now on the only requirements are that Greyhound or any other carrier must give 90 days' notice of any change in services or fares, and that scheduled services must be maintained. Other carriers will be allowed to compete ON CERTAIN ROUTES (emphasis added). The province will cease its subsidies at the end of June of this year.

"The most important part of this story is what the announcement does not spell out: to wit, which routes will be opened to competition. It's therefore possible to speculate that Greyhound will retain its monopoly status on those routes with no further obligations: it will be able to raise its rates or change frequency with impunity. The province is expecting small carriers and community groups to serve routes that Greyhound doesn't wish to, but will not be providing subsidies. It doesn't seem likely that small carriers and community groups will have the funds to serve routes that Greyhound - a huge international corporation - couldn't make a profit on," Peter Lacey wrote for the Transport Action Canada Prairie Newsletter.

Keith Knox, Past President of Transport 2000 Saskatchewan

"When death knocked, Keith Knox replied in a typically unconventional way: By agreeing to a pre-funeral wake at Bushwakker's with family and friends, and the spirited little Knox as the special guest - mere weeks before the death he knew was coming. That done, the Regina-born and -raised Knox, a dedicated volunteer with a keen interest in local history, died Sunday afternoon from mesothelioma, a cancer associated with exposure to asbestos," Will Chabun reported for the Regina Leader-Post on May 8.

"The long-time staffer at the Consumers Co-operative Refinery was 72 when he died. Over the years, he was president of the Saskatchewan History & Folklore Society Inc., Transport 2000 Saskatchewan, the Regina Astronomical Society and the Regina Plains Museum ... He was also a founding chair or member of the city's transit advisory committee, the Regina Lyric Light Opera Society, Biographies Regina, the Bell Barn Society of Indian Head, the Regina Male Voice Choir plus the local branches of the Monarchist League of Canada, the Canadian Aviation Historical Society, Heritage Regina, the Saskatchewan Architectural Heritage Society and the Saskatchewan Archaeological Society," the  Leader-Post reported. 

Knox's memorial service will be held at 2 p.m. June 2 at Westminster United Church.

Transport 2000, M. Dubé propose une uniformisation de la taxe sur les immatriculations à un niveau de 75 $ par an

Président du conseil de Transport 2000 Québec, M. Robert A. Dubé estime que le gouvernement du Québec doit demeurer la principale source de financement des investissements mais appelle également à une plus grande contribution du gouvernement du Canada. Pour Transport 2000, le recours au versement transport - ou prélèvement sur la masse salariale - demeure un moyen de financement approprié. Son implantation devrait être graduelle dans le temps et le taux modulé selon la taille des entreprises et la masse salariale. M. Dubé considère que le secteur immobilier doit aussi devenir contributeur, soit par de nouvelles taxes, soit directement avec une part de l'investissement initial. Il serait possible de dégager une plus-value foncière par le biais des nouvelles constructions ou des propriétés existantes, pour ensuite les réinvestir dans le transport en commun. Favorable à l'implantation de péages « d'infrastructure » ou cordon, M. Dubé propose une uniformisation de la taxe sur les immatriculations à un niveau de 75 $ par an. Il estime que les contributions municipales au TC pourraient être augmentées» La consultation de la Communauté métropolitaine de Montréal a rapporté le  le 9 mai.

Fuse plan for airport service with commuter rail project, Train de l’Ouest advocates

"A group pushing for more West Island commuter trains is urging Quebec to reject a new proposal for an elevated light-rapid transit system linking Trudeau Airport and downtown Montreal. … The railway right of way is there, “the stations are there, the commuters are there,” (Clifford) Lincoln said. “In making it better, surely there must be a way whereby we can carry additional passengers from the airport to downtown. Mass rail transit for the public should be a priority over an airport shuttle,” as commuter trains would carry far more passengers," Andy Riga wrote for the Montreal Gazette on May 8.

CP proxy war and the future of Canada's Class 1 railways

"Today, the challenge is real to Canada's Class 1 railways - to do whatever it takes to help give Canada's regional industry, and indeed the railways, their shareholders and short line partners an opportunity for enhanced growth and profitability so everyone has a chance to win," Dave Watts wrote to the editor of the Ottawa Citizen on May. 7.

"Class 1 railways are now eyeing, reclaiming or not renewing some short line operating contracts. Increasingly, that very infrastructure on which the short lines operate, some of which is 150 years old, is being reclaimed and lifted by the Class 1 owner with the steel destined for use elsewhere in their system or sold as scrap, leaving rightsof-way to snowmobilers and ATV enthusiasts.

"CP has ceased operation and abandoned the line from Smiths Falls to Mattawa. Sections of the line near Arnprior and Renfrew have already been removed, but the northern section between Pembroke and Mattawa is still on the ground. And it must stay. Not only is the line the last remaining Toronto bypass by rail, burgeoning business and industry in Renfrew County and Nipissing District are showing signs that cost-efficient and environmentally preferable rail must be included in their shipping decisions," the Ottawa Citizen letter said.

Coalition for Algoma Passenger Rail, Protect the Ontario Northland 

CAPT reports, "This past month we have appreciated your support in our fight to help save the Ontario Northland Transportation Corporation (ONTC).  CAPT has been collaborating with Northern Ontario Mayors, Chiefs, Reeves and fellow supporters in attempts at encouraging the Ontario Government to maintain what we believe to be a vital service in Ontario.  It is only with the continued support of our community that we will be able to successfully achieve our goal.  We would like to remind you that any donations are always greatly appreciated and will always be accompanied by a tax receipt for amounts over $20. If you would like to help support our cause you can contact us at or 705-949-2301 exten. 4734."

CAPT,  Help save the CP rail line from Pembroke to Mattawa

CAPT has been working diligently to convince the Government of Canada and the Ontario Government to maintain the rail line between Pembroke and Mattawa.  This rail line serves as a crucial link between Eastern and Western Canada. On May MP Cheryl Gallant introduced the issue to the House of Commons. She said the petitioners are asking that the Government of Canada do everything in its power to ensure that the rails between Pembroke and Mattawa remain in place. A great campaigner, Michael Stephens, has been leading this charge to get these petitions in place.

Legislation improves Metro Vancouver’s transit system
May 7, 2012: BC's new legislation on collecting transit fare evasion fines and TransLink governance. 

Transport Action Canada, Hotline 1165 
May 11, 2012
(formerly Transport 2000 / anciennement Transport 2000 Canada)
(613) 594-3290


May 12, Toronto, Moving Forward A Public Forum about Transportation" co-hosted by Transport Action Ontario

May 23, Vancouver, Transport Action BC 17:45 to 19:45 at the Vancouver Firehall Library at West 10th and Granville. Annual General Meeting will be from 19:00 – 19:15

May 31, Toronto, Mobility pricing conference,Metropolitan Hotel

June 2, Toronto, Cycle and sole, 3pm  Rally at Queen's Park for pedestrian and cycling safety.